Two children have been allegedly killed in the Wadata area of Makurdi by the men of the police force, during a gun fire battle between the police and angry Muslim youths, who were demonstrating the demolition of a mosque, houses and shops, by the Benue state Urban Development Board.
However, Muslim youths and brick layers in Wadata, whose houses and shops were destroyed, have vowed to mobilize their people to stage a bloody protest to compel the state government to reverse its hasty decision in displacing them of their lands.
LEADERSHIP WEEKEND gathered that the Benue State Government had announced plan to build a beach hotel at the bank of the Benue river, around New Garage area of Wadata, a suburb of Makurdi, the state capital.
Sequel to this development, the Benue state Urban Development Board (UDB) had yesterday, demolished a central mosque in the area, about 50 housing units, shops and offices belonging to some Muslims and members of the Brick Layers Association.
A serious clash ensued between the youths of New Garage area and the men of the Benue state Police command, when the officials of UDB on a mandatory assignment demolished what they referred to as ‘illegal Structures’ sited on government’s land.
The clash, which lasted for about two hours, caused a traffic jam on post office road, just as the protesters mounted barricades on the ever busy road. The men of the police force shoot sporadically to disperse the protesting youths and Bricklayers.
The Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Philip Agena, who spoke to LEADERSHIP WEEKEND on phone, denied the allegation that the police had shot and killed two children during the course of the exercise but said that their men had only gone to restore peace and ensure security of lives and property.